Sunday, April 04, 2010 by
They say a picture is worth a thousand words; well then a video is worth a hundred thousand. Utilizing online videos is one of the fastest trends in marketing today and the good news is it's easier and cheaper to accomplish than ever before.
As internet speeds and compression technology have advanced the dominant trend on the internet has been to harness the power of videos. Online visitors want quick access to information and properly constructed videos provide just that. They also allow visitors the chance to see and hear directly from the company.
It's no wonder that one of the most highly ranked websites in the world is YouTube. It consistently ranks in the top 5 websites globally and close to 700,000 websites currently link to YouTube. Chad Hurley, a co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of YouTube, claimed last October that the website has "well over a billion views a day." There was indeed a good reason Google paid $1.65 billion for YouTube in 2006 (the company was only founded in 2005).
Companies of all types are now posting video content to YouTube and many are also directly linking that content to their own company websites (which is very easy to accomplish). IAQ videos can also be posted at no charge to the just introduced IAQ Video Network. Company videos consist of commercials, infomercials, press releases, instructional videos, news and some that are mostly for entertainment. Many savvy companies also link their videos to their Twitter, Facebook and other social media pages.
One of the great features of utilizing YouTube to post video content for your indoor air quality or environmental business is that it's completely free to do and people do not need to be registered with YouTube to watch your company videos. Paid promotions for videos is an option for registered users, but is not at all required.
To get started you only need a digital camcorder (which cost as little as a hundred dollars - although ones that record in high definition are preferred and these can be found for $250+) or digital camera and a computer (for editing and uploading) to get started.
When creating video content be sure to consider who your audience is and tailor your video to them. The great thing about YouTube, or loading videos directly to your existing website, is you can make individual videos targeted to as many specific groups as you want. Another thing to consider is keeping the videos short, 1 to 10 minutes is ideal for most circumstances (YouTube limits videos to 10 minutes in length). Viewers will lose interest and close out of long videos more often than not.
Once you have your digital camcorder shoot your video. Long individual video clips should usually be avoided and instead include individual clips of 10 to 30 seconds. A tripod ($25) is strongly recommended to prevent the video from appearing shaky. Most camcorders also allow still photography and a mixture of video and rolling still photographs is often the easiest type of video to produce. Once you have your content, download it onto your computer and use one of the many free video editing programs that are currently available (Windows Live Movie Maker is a good one to start with).
Video editing software will allow you to edit video clips, add photos, transitions, titles, text, music and voice narration. For voice narration there is a great free program called Audacity that allows recording and editing of any narration directly on your computer. To use the software simply download the program and purchase a digital microphone (ideally one with a headset - $50).
To see YouTube's video and audio specifications please click here. The page is full of all the information you will need and these same specifications can generally be considered even if you are making a video to simply upload directly your own website.
Cochrane & Associates, LLC, the environmental, mold and indoor air quality industries' only dedicated marketing, public relations and business development consulting firm works with clients to develop ways to create and utilize online videos for customers. We hope you consider making online videos a prominent part of your company's business development strategy. We also invite you to visit our newest venture, the IAQ Video Network www.IAQTV.com. Companies can post their videos or links to videos from our industry at no charge on the website.